American Airlines has opened a new $215 million hangar at its hub at Chicago O’Hare International Airport (ORD) to be used by its aviation maintenance technicians.
The new facility, dubbed Hangar 2, is the largest hangar on the airfield at ORD, and its completion marks the carrier’s latest milestone reached in a series of major investments in Chicago.
The $215 million investment in the new hangar and ground equipment building is the latest example in a long list of investments in ORD, including: American’s five new gates known as the L-Stinger, representing the first new gates at the airport in 25 years; a new Flagship Lounge; renovated Admirals Club lounges; and an expanding list of new destinations added to the ORD route network.
These improvements set the framework for American to continue to grow its operation in Chicago and throughout the network.
The 191,000-square-foot structure, which is replacing a smaller hangar on the airfield, has increased bay capacity. The hangar is able to accommodate six narrowbody aircraft or two narrowbody aircraft and two widebody aircraft, including the Boeing 787, on which American operates international flights at ORD.
The expanded space has allowed for more overnight workload capacity in the past month that it’s been open. Its high-tech features and updated workcenters provide more than 850 ORD maintenance team members with the most current tools to maintain the airline’s state-of-the-art aircraft.
The new hangar facility makes way for the completion of new Runway 9C/27C at O’Hare, estimated for completion in 2020. The new runway is one of many capital improvements underway to complete the airfield modernization, which also sets stage for the forthcoming $8.5 billion terminal expansion at O’Hare.
Additionally, American opened a new ground equipment maintenance building at ORD this month, where vehicles and equipment used on the airfield — like aircraft tugs, deicing trucks and baggage carts — are maintained.
At ORD, American operates more than 500 daily flights to nearly 150 destinations. In 2018, American added 18 new destinations to its ORD route network, including new service to Venice, Italy; Vancouver, British Columbia; and Honolulu. For 2019, American has already announced service to an additional 12 new destinations, including Chicago’s only nonstop service to Athens, Greece.
The only hub carrier at ORD offering service on the Boeing 787, American will fly up to 13 787s out of ORD on peak days next summer. In the last five years since American Airlines merged with US Airways to create the largest airline in the world, the carrier has added 28 new routes serving Chicago.
Additionally, American expanded its Shuttle product to fly between New York LaGuardia and ORD earlier this year, offering business travelers a more convenient commute between the two business centres.